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Watch: Jeremy Hunt accidentally refers to ‘English Government’ while responding to Plaid Cymru MP

17 Nov 2022 3 minute read
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt. UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor.

Jeremy Hunt accidentally referred to the UK Government as the “English Government” in the House of Commons while responding to a Plaid Cymru MP.

Ceredigion MP Ben Lake had asked the Chancellor whether the £1.2bn increase in the Welsh Government was a real terms increase, and if not what impact it would have on the rising cost of living in Wales.

Jeremy Hunt responded: “Because of the way the Barnett consequentials work this is a cash amount that the Welsh Government will receive, but if they do what the English government is doing with schools and hospitals…”

MPs began jeering as he realised what he had said.

He continued: “If they do what the United Kingdom government is doing in England with schools and hospitals, then there will be a real terms increase in Welsh schools and in Welsh hospitals.”

MPs were quick to jump in the error, with SNP MP Angus MacNeil tweeing: “Chancellor has just called the Government at Westminster, “the English Government.”

Another SNP MP, Amy Callaghan, asked: “A slip of the tongue or the truth laid bare for all to hear?”

‘Immense challenges’

Responding to the Autumn Statement, Rebecca Evans, the Welsh Government’s Finance Minister, said that it meant that people would be paying more for less.

The Chancellor’s statement confirmed tax rises for people across the United Kingdom along with spending cuts in future spending review periods.

Forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility have indicated the biggest fall in disposable income since records began, with household incomes not expected to get back to pre-pandemic levels until 2028.

Rebecca Evans, Minister for Finance and Local Government, said: “We should be under no illusions; this statement confirms we are in a deep recession. Real incomes are set to fall by 7% over the next two years, while inflation is at its highest rate in 41 years.

“Today’s Autumn Statement is an invoice for the UK Government’s failure to manage the economy over the last 12 years.

“It provides pain today and pain tomorrow, with higher taxes and energy costs now and spending cuts to come. Ultimately, it leaves people paying more for less.

“Throughout this process I have made clear to the Chancellor that Wales cannot afford deep and damaging austerity. I am relieved that the Chancellor has at least partially responded to my calls for more funding for public services in the here and now.

“However, let me be clear that today’s statement doesn’t even come close to providing the funding needed to protect public service budgets against the immense challenges caused by record inflation.

“We will be carefully analysing the detail of today’s announcements ahead of our December budget.”


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17 Comments
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Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
20 days ago

Classic freudian slip 😉

Frank
Frank
20 days ago

Accidentally on purpose.

Kenneth Vivian
Kenneth Vivian
20 days ago

It is, of course, an English govt. English MPs could and do veto every motion put forward that is beneficial to Welsh workers and Welsh identity. The ‘Welsh’ are always foreigners at Westminster.

Fi yn unig
Fi yn unig
20 days ago

Hoorah! ‘The English government’ has been declared so the headline will read ‘Short statement declares Wales independent’. That’s all it takes.

Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
20 days ago

Finally saying what we have all always known.

Rhufawn Jones
Rhufawn Jones
20 days ago

Accidental, but true. That’s exactly what it is – the English Government, governing Wales and Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Riki
Riki
20 days ago

There you go people! They use the term “British” government to make it seem as though we are one people. We aren’t! We are Britons, Anglo, and Scots. And there is nothing wrong with that.

DAI Ponty
DAI Ponty
20 days ago

The Tory party are now and have been for a while a Nationalist Party AN ENGLISH NATIONALIST PARTY and when people from Wales vote for them they are voting for the English

David
David
20 days ago
Reply to  DAI Ponty

The Labour party is also an English Nationalist Party.

Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
20 days ago
Reply to  David

Not quite David – but they are both solidly unionist partys

George Thomas
George Thomas
20 days ago

Young people are going to be attacked by this foul government (UK Tories or UK Labour chasing after Tory voters) until they’re pension age, then some government will turn off the triple lock at that point.

Gwyn Hopkins
20 days ago

MPs representing English constituencies form 90% of Rishi Sunak’s Cabinet. For the Parliamentary Conservative Party the figure is 94.5%.  The UK Government is, therefore, to all intents and purposes the English Government. Moreover, Parliament (and the media) effectively calls it the English Government when discussing foreign affairs for it refers to Anglo – French relations, for example, never UK – French relations.   

Riki
Riki
20 days ago
Reply to  Gwyn Hopkins

Spot on Mr Hopkins. When foreign relations are on the line, Mysteriously the three nations disappear from The World and History itself. Now I have nothing wrong with An English PM representing the English people. What I do have a problem with is when they make out what’s best for them is best for us. And the fact we as a people cannot interact with the outside world on our terms, but Englands.

Llefain
Llefain
20 days ago

The smile in his eyes afterwards got me.
He knows that’s how they see and talk about it behind closed doors.
He said the quiet part out loud is all.

Riki
Riki
20 days ago
Reply to  Llefain

Behind closed doors and worse still…to the rest of the world!

John Howard Edwards
John Howard Edwards
20 days ago

And the irony of our complaining on this forum that he used the term ‘English government’ is that we are doing the complaining in, ahem, English.

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